Progress technology in microencapsulation methods for cell therapy.


Cell encapsulation in microcapsules allows the in situ delivery of secreted proteins to treat different pathological conditions. Spherical microcapsules offer optimal surface-to-volume ratio for protein and nutrient diffusion, and thus, cell viability. This technology permits cell survival along with protein secretion activity upon appropriate host stimuli without the deleterious effects of immunosuppressant drugs. Microcapsules can be classified in 3 categories: matrix-core/shell microcapsules, liquid-core/shell microcapsules, and cells-core/shell microcapsules (or conformal coating). Many preparation techniques using natural or synthetic polymers as well as inorganic compounds have been reported. Matrix-core/shell microcapsules in which cells are hydrogel-embedded, exemplified by alginates capsule, is by far the most studied method. Numerous refinement of the technique have been proposed over the years such as better material characterization and purification, improvements in microbead generation methods, and new microbeads coating techniques. Other approaches, based on liquid-core capsules showed improved protein production and increased cell survival. But aside those more traditional techniques, new techniques are emerging in response to shortcomings of existing methods. More recently, direct cell aggregate coating have been proposed to minimize membrane thickness and implants size. Microcapsule performances are largely dictated by the physicochemical properties of the materials and the preparation techniques employed. Despite numerous promising pre-clinical results, at the present time each methods proposed need further improvements before reaching the clinical phase.

DOI: 10.1002/btpr.226
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@article{Rabanel2009ProgressTI, title={Progress technology in microencapsulation methods for cell therapy.}, author={J R Rabanel and Xavier Banquy and Hamza Zouaoui and Mohamed Mokhtar and Patrice Hildgen}, journal={Biotechnology progress}, year={2009}, volume={25 4}, pages={946-63} }